was like stopping a buzz
saw with the bare hand.
From my position on the deck beside Kantos Kan I saw ship after ship of
the enemy take the awful, sickening dive which proclaims its total
destruction. Slowly we manoeuvered our circle of death until we hung
above the gardens where our green warriors were engaged. The order was
passed down for them to embark. Then they rose slowly to a position
within the centre of the circle.
In the meantime the therns' fire had practically ceased. They had had
enough of us and were only too glad to let us go on our way in peace.
But our escape was not to be encompassed with such ease, for scarcely
had we gotten under way once more in the direction of the entrance to
Omean than we saw far to the north a great black line topping the
horizon. It could be nothing other than a fleet of war.
Whose or whither bound, we could not even conjecture. When they had
come close enough to make us out at all, Kantos Kan's operator received
a radio-aerogram, which he immediately handed to my companion. He read
the thing and handed it to me.
"Kantos Kan:" it read. "Surrender, in the name of the Jeddak of
Helium, for you cannot escape," and it was signed, "Zat Arras."
The therns must have caught and translated the message almost as soon
as did we, for they immediately renewed hostilities when they realized
that we were soon to be set upon by other enemies.
Before Zat Arras had approached near enough to fire a shot we were
again hotly engaged with the thern fleet, and as soon as he drew near
he too commenced to pour a terrific fusillade of heavy shot into us.
Ship after ship reeled and staggered into uselessness beneath the
pitiless fire that we were undergoing.
The thing could not last much longer. I ordered the transports to
descend again into the gardens of the therns.
"Wreak your vengeance to the utmost," was my message to the green
allies, "for by night there will be none left to avenge your wrongs."
Presently I saw the ten battleships that had been ordered to hold the
shaft of Omean. They were returning at full speed, firing their stern
batteries almost continuously. There could be but one explanation.
They were being pursued by another hostile fleet. Well, the situation
could be no worse. The expedition already was doomed. No man that had
embarked upon it would return
The ship was listing frightfully to starboard, rendering the port boats useless, while half the starboard boats had been demolished by the explosion.Page 5
" Presently she resumed as though she had not ceased speaking.Page 14
She had loved him! I wondered if in her heart of hearts she did not love him yet.Page 20
Then he explained that the U-33 would cruise in these waters for a time, sinking neutral and enemy shipping indiscriminately, and looking for one of the German raiders that was supposed to be in these parts.Page 27
The Baron was no match for me in a hand-to-hand encounter, and I soon had him pinned to the deck and the life almost choked out of him.Page 28
"I have not spoken to Baron von Schoenvorts other than in your presence when first we came aboard the U-33.Page 33
"When were yez after smellin' iceber-rgs off Peru?" Icebergs! "Icebergs, nothin'!" exclaimed one of the Englishmen.Page 34
Well, we'll accept her challenge.Page 36
The creature must have been about the height of a fair sized man; its features were similar to those of a man; yet had it been a man? I could not say, for it resembled an ape no more than it did a man.Page 38
"Did you ever taste water from a stagnant pool full of tadpoles?" Bradley asked.Page 39
"You might as well call our attention to the fact, sir," he said, "that science has indicated that there is fresh water and vegetation on Mars.Page 49
As soon as the boche and his guard were aboard again, I called all hands on deck, including von Schoenvorts, and there I explained to them that the time had come for us to enter into some sort of an agreement among ourselves that would relieve us of the annoyance and embarrassment of being divided into two antagonistic parts--prisoners and captors.Page 52
The creature in our rear was gaining on us rapidly when Nobs flew past me like a meteor and rushed straight for the frightful reptile.Page 55
The others followed him, and in a minute we should have been overwhelmed.Page 71
"I do not fear you," screamed the creature.Page 73
"You came from back there?" I asked.Page 75
I called a few times and waited, but there was no response and no one came.Page 83
The wind is off-shore; the tide is running out; perhaps it will be carried into one of those numerous ocean-currents which sweep perpetually from pole to pole and from continent to continent, to be deposited at last upon some inhabited shore.Page 87
And so we say good-bye in this, our last message to the world beyond the barrier cliffs.